Several of Guy Lafleur’s teammates and people influenced by this great man wanted to offer warm tributes to the blonde demon ahead of and during his national funeral on Tuesday morning.
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Here are some
“That can not be. I’ve had so many good times with Guy. I went up against Guy, but it turned out to be a friend In NYC. […] It was easy dealer with Guy Lafleur. What puzzles me is that everyone here has a memory of Guy Lafleur. People get the impression that Guy had dinner with them. […] We will miss him, but we cannot forget him. It is impossible.”
“The Canadian Hockey Club family has lost a great legend. A man who loved his audience and whom his audience loved. Guy Lafleur, my friend. I didn’t get a chance to see him play as a junior but when I first saw him on the ice I was impressed. Thanks Sam Pollock for drafting Guy Lafleur. It allowed us, the players and the spectators, to win five Stanley Cups. […] I called him often during his unexpected retirement. He already told me that he washed his tank three times in the same day. I wasn’t surprised he made a comeback. Guy left us too early. If you want to make another comeback, you’re welcome, Guy. Guy! Guy! Guy!”
“He touched us (his teammates) the same way he did all the people of Quebec. He left no one indifferent. I don’t know if the salary cap will give us the chance to turn other pages (of hockey) like that. I very much doubt that we will see teams like the ones from the 70s again.
“I could talk for hours about what kind of person Guy was. But you already know that. As Guy said, play every game like it’s the last. Nobody embodied this philosophy more than Guy. Even off the ice, he lived his life to the fullest. Thank you for being here today to celebrate the life of this incredible man. We lost two very special people in Mike Bossy this week. I hope they are not looking for a big defender just yet.”
“Guy is a special person, a great hockey player, but what made him special was how he made people around him feel. I was 7 years old when Guy Lafleur made his debut at CH. He immediately became my idol. He was in a class by himself. He said what he thought, he played his own way and that’s why we liked him so much. From the first days of my training camp I was matched with Steve Shutt and Guy Lafleur. I didn’t touch the puck once for fear of disappointing them. But I was on the ice with my idol. A super starbut also one of the boys. Guy always made time for everyone. He was really proud to represent the Montreal Canadiens. We say goodbye to a legend. We’re losing one of the greatest players and ambassadors, but we’re also losing a friend. Thanks for everything Guy.”
“I dreamed of being a Ken Dryden and playing on the same team as Guy Lafleur. He was living proof that you can and should dream big. When I walked through the CH dressing room doors for the first time, I became aware of their size. Before he left he gave me a smack on the pads, and said, “Welcome to the Canadiens.” He knows that those few words make all the difference and that he will be there for you. Our most memorable fight of 1989, this time in Rangers uniform, was also his great return to the Forum. The crowd went wild, a magical evening. So magical that when he gave me score two goals, I received a standing ovation. That night I saw a hero come home. That night, this hero even found a way to throw flowers at his former teammates. […] I can tell you that even we, the elders, have our picture with Guy Lafleur. Given the immense gap created by your departure, I would have gladly taken an extension. Rest in peace my friend, everyone here knows you exist.”
“Guy Lafleur’s name was all over the QMJHL. The trophy for the best playoff player is called Guy Lafleur. We saw Guy Lafleur constantly at the QMJHL, at the banquets, the awards ceremony, he was always there. Kind. Wear his heart on his sleeve. Simple, always well formulated. I don’t want to, it almost feels like we’re family once we spoke to him. […] It’s like a hockey game that ends when Guy leaves.”
“Guy Lafleur was there. It was this man, this Guy Lafleur, that I knew best: a generous and warm man after his career. People realize that he was not only a Hall of Famer, but also a kind, generous man with an unparalleled sense of humor. He had time for everyone. The reason people trust Guy Lafleur so much is because of his openness. He spoke from the heart, a passionate heart. What he said, he meant. Always honest, and that’s what Quebecers really appreciate about Guy Lafleur.
The best player on the best team in the world. A team player for the communities that needed him most. We learned a lot from Guy. A man of class and a humility that overshadowed his celebrity status. His humble treatment of everyone, no matter who they were, should serve as an example to all of us. Thanks for everything Guy.”
Martin Saint Louis
(Regarding Guy’s arrival at the arena at 2pm on matchdays) “Those are things I’ve heard but you’re not sure if they were blown stories. When I speak to elders, I can’t believe how long it took to prepare Game.
What I’ve heard from the elders is his impeccable work ethic. You can be as talented as you want at anything, but without the work ethic you will never reach the heights you are capable of. Guy had it by the looks of it and I’m not surprised.
My dad is a big Canadiens fan and Guy Lafleur fan. It didn’t take long for Guy Lafleur to become my idol. My first idol, for good reason: blond hair blowing in the wind, in the neutral zone at 100 km/h, that shothis determination to help the team win was simple.
“He was the idol of the Quebec nation. Today we say thank you to Guy Lafleur for all the pride he has given us.
“It’s a moment to thank him for his deep humanity.”